Pahoa man charged with robbery, theft, assault

Police have charged 18-year-old Kauka K.K.H. Santiago of Pahoa with robbery and other related offenses stemming from an incident that occurred the evening of Feb. 12 in Leilani Estates in Puna.

During that incident, a 74-year-old man reported that Santiago — who police said “is known to often dress as a woman, and the victim knew Santiago as a female acquaintance” — came to the victim’s front door and sprayed him in the face with mace.


After being sprayed, the victim went to his bedroom to rinse the chemical from his face. Santiago then allegedly entered the residence, threatened the victim and stole several valuable items.

Fearing for his safety, the victim jumped out of a bedroom window and hid in the bushes until he believed the suspect was gone.

Santiago was located Wednesday in the area of Leilani Avenue and Hapu‘u Street in Leilani Estates. He was arrested on the strength of three outstanding warrants of arrest issued for revocation of supervised release, and one bench warrant for failure to appear stemming from a third-degree assault and fourth-degree promotion of a harmful drug investigation.


Santiago appeared in Hilo District Court on Thursday. Although he was again granted supervised release on the warrants, he remains in police custody on the robbery charges.

After conferring with county prosecutors, detectives charged Santiago with first-degree robbery, first-degree theft, first-degree burglary during an emergency period, and third-degree assault. His bail was set at $77,000.

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